Warren road tests the new ProPanel form China using DaVinci Resolve.
The first thing you notice when the panel pops out of the box is the weight of it, 7Kgs or 15.5lbs. I had imagined it to be plastic and very lightweight, so was surprised to find it very solid and robust. I plugged it in and it worked straight away, it's USB so very easy to set up.
I then used it on a 10 hour grade with clients, while my $30,000 BMD panels sat in the cupboard! If after an hour I was struggling I figured I could doing a quick change during a client phone break. I didn’t need to change, the session forced me to use the ProPanel in conjunction with the mouse and keyboard. Just playing with demo footage for 20 mins wouldn’t have been the same. I wanted a real experience good or bad.
The grade would have been a little faster with the BMD surface, but I didn't feel too compromised using the ProPanel.
Sure I had to use the mouse and keyboard a lot more than normal, but by the end of the session I was way faster than when I started the session.
The track balls and rings have a positive feel to them, not too loose or light to touch. They have good friction and feel more expensive than they really should for $800US.
Using the ProPanel with my MacPro the color change was instant on the monitor, no lag or stepping when changing either the gain or the color.
The 9 buttons along the top are fixed. Probably not what I would have chosen, but still very useable and accessible.
Undo, Redo, Grab Still, Play Still, Next Node, Previous Node, Add Dynamic Keyframe, Add Static Keyframe, Reset Current Node.
I would love to have seen a new Node button and some transport keys but for around $800US it looks nice and is very easy to use.